Self-employment can be difficult for people just starting to become sole traders. Luckily, there are many tech tools and current tech advancements that can help you to ace self-employment, whether you are focusing on becoming more organized, or dealing with the complex financial side of self-employment and tax returns. This article will detail some of the top ways in which you can use tech to your advantage when you become self-employed.
1.- Scheduling Software
Firstly, when you are self-employed, it might be the only time in your life when you have ever needed to plan your own schedule, and this can make it difficult to remember and keep on top of the copious amounts of deadlines and meetings that you need to organize. However, the scheduling of these does not always have to be left to you, and there is a wide assortment of tech to help you to manage this. Calendar apps can help to notify you of a meeting when you reach a certain place, or at a certain time of day. For instance, home inspection software can help you schedule appointments and communicate with clients to ensure that you are on the same page.
2.- Accounting Software
The major aspect of self-employment that is likely to disorientate you is your finances, with there being many complexities when it comes to managing your finances and creating your tax returns. In fact, the management of this is unlikely to be similar to any process that you have conducted before. However, there are many accounting apps that have been specially developed for self-employed people, allowing you to manage all of your business expenses, and to help you to track all of the payment you have received by the end of the tax year. There are also many tax return apps that can help you to create your tax return with the help of technology.
Not only this, but you might want to consider downloading tax apps and your bank’s app. Tax apps will allow you to view your tax returns wherever you are, and keep your information safe and organized. This means that if you have any concerns, you can instantly check and adapt these. Your banking app will also allow you to check your expenses conveniently, which can help you to maintain your expenditure when out and about.
3.- Invoice Creators
Most self-employed people will receive their payments via the creation of invoices that are sent to their clients. However, creating an invoice can be difficult, especially if you do not have a template or if you are not adept at using programs such as Excel spreadsheets. To make invoice creation easier for you, you should look at downloading invoice creator apps. These provide you with simple invoice templates that you can use on your laptop or mobile and then convert into PDFs or other forms of documents once you are finished, exporting these onto the appropriate platform. However, the only disadvantage to this is that some invoice creators will not allow you to create more complex invoices, and if you do not find a template to match your needs, you may have to return to the trials of Excel.
4.- Cloud Storage
As a sole trader, you will be responsible for yours and your client’s important documents and information. If you lose these, this can cause a number of complex issues, such as breaches in security or a loss of business. So, to ensure that these are stored efficiently, you should consider starting to use remote storage system such as the Cloud. When using the Cloud, your documents are stored on an online server rather than on your private system such as your computer. Your Cloud provider will have a number of security protocols in place that will prevent your data from being breached. This ensures that all your important documents can be backed up, protecting them from loss if your computer crashes or security breaches occur.
5.- Video Conferencing Apps
Lastly, self-employed people often never meet their clients face-to-face. However, it is still important that you communicate with this clientele effectively. To ensure that you can do this, you should download video conferencing applications, such as Skype for Business, that allow you to communicate with clients face-to-face without the need for real-life contact. This can ensure that you completely understand your client’s expectations and limits the risk of miscommunication.